“America is facing complex challenges in the workforce, economic, and education arenas. While we work to recover from the ‘Great Recession,’ we simultaneously struggle to address growing gaps in student and worker skill, credential, and educational attainment—gaps that slow economic recovery, inhibit industry growth and innovation, and threaten the prosperity of American families. It is clear that if the country is to retain its standing as an economic leader with a world-class workforce, we must pursue bold, responsive, and creative solutions. In the 21st century and beyond, America, as it has throughout its history, must continue to out-educate, out-build and out-innovate.
The Secretary’s Advisory Committee on Apprenticeship (ACA) strongly believes that the national Registered Apprenticeship system is a critical component of these solutions. For 75 years, the national Registered Apprenticeship system has offered an employer-driven training model for a diverse array of industry sectors that combines on-the-job learning, classroom instruction, and mentoring. Apprentices earn a paycheck while they are in training, and employers are assured of a valuable and competent workforce. As important, Registered Apprenticeship offers career pathways leading to industry recognized credentials, giving employers an avenue to elevate the competencies of their workers, and giving workers and their families opportunities for advancement and increased earnings as skills and expertise are acquired. In today’s tumultuous and global economy, Registered Apprenticeship is a proven strategy for ensuring that employers and workers can compete and thrive.
[In this report], the ACA provides a summary of its vision, goals, and recommendations for advancing Registered Apprenticeship as an essential 21st century workforce and education solution. [The authors] have organized these recommendations along the three themes of Out-Educate, Out-Build, and Out-Innovate” (p. 4). (Abstractor: Author)Full publication title: 21st Century Registered Apprenticeship: A Shared Vision for Increasing Opportunity, Innovation, and Competitiveness for American Workers and Employers
Major Findings & Recommendations
To achieve their vision for 21st-century Registered Apprenticeship, the ACA advocates for the following: • “Educate employers and support industry engagement… • Educate stakeholders, policymakers, and the public on benefits of apprenticeship… • Work closely with education (secondary and post-secondary) to promote apprenticeship as post-secondary education with industry recognized credentials... • Support strategies that increase demand for high quality programs with strong industry investment... • Promote coordinated workforce and economic development efforts across federal and state agencies that can increase the demand for Registered Apprenticeship… • Build pipelines and pathways through strategic partnerships… • Invest in pilot programs, demonstration projects, and strategies that increase the capacity of the national Registered Apprenticeship system at federal, state, and local levels… • Scale continuing innovation in America’s Registered Apprenticeship system that recognizes the proven strategies of existing programs with a long history of demonstrated results and innovative efforts led by states… • Continue the efforts to modernize the regulatory frameworks governing America’s Registered Apprenticeship system” (p. 6) (Abstractor: Author and Website Staff)